outstanding outdoor spaces

GEMS Didcot Primary Academy

GEMS Didcot Primary Academy wanted to help their children learn to be resilient and creative, and to learn that challenge is a vital part of the learning process. We asked headteacher Alison Ashcroft how their new outdoor space has helped to transform the school and its students. 

 

Why did you want to develop your playground?
We wanted our children to have hands on experiences designed to foster their natural curiosity into a life-long love of learning. Improving their outdoor space seemed like the perfect way to do it!

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We don’t have any hesitation in recommending Playforce. We’ve already used them twice, and we would definitely use them again! Alison Ashcroft, Head Teacher

What were the key elements that made Playforce stand out from other providers?

One of your outdoor grounds consultants, Neil, worked closely with GEMS Didcot Primary Academy to help us create the perfect outdoor space. He listened carefully to what we wanted and didn’t put pressure on us to go a certain way. It gave us so much confidence! We knew that we were getting what we paid for and something that was just right for us.

 

The equipment is of really high quality, and the installation teams have been friendly and efficient - happily engaging with the children to answer their many questions!

 

We don’t have any hesitation in recommending Playforce. We’ve already used them twice, and we would definitely use them again!

How are you using the space to deliver outdoor learning and educational play?
The children are much more willing to go outside during playtimes so that they can use all the new equipment. It’s also made active, curriculum-based learning much easier to integrate into the school day. At the moment we’re planning to build a sound garden, which the children think is a great idea!

 

What are the biggest benefits you have seen for the children?
Although there have been loads of learning benefits, we’ve been really thrilled at how much more active the children have become. The trim trail is really popular and the climber has provided something a little more adventurous for those that really want to test their physical skills.

 

Can you share any practice insights you have gained?
We’ve been really impressed by how involved the children have been throughout the whole process, and how interested they’ve been to see how things work. It just goes to show that children are keen to get involved if you let them, and even happier to see the results!

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